We gave you guys the intro to the Rogue Flashbenders a while back. Usually, the staff here at The Phoblographer wait for shoots, jobs, or assignments to test the more professional gear. The Rogue Flashbenders fit perfectly into this category. I recently used them to photograph an event happening at work.
At work (I’m in the Social Media Department at B&H) the Event Space was holding a photoshoot with models in different sections of the store with reflectors, lights, cameras, etc. It was a photo geek’s wet dream.
My boss went for a walk and called my cell telling me that a cool event was happening and that I should go over and shoot it for some sort of future work. So I went into my desk drawer and was about to pull out the Gary Fong Lightsphere Collapsible but then though that I would probably need something with a bit more versatility. So instead, I reached for the large flashbender and the 580 EX II.
FYI: All of the images still belong to me, I can do what I please with them. Besides, the Phoblographer is very good friends with B&H. Also note that these aren’t the final images.
B&H’s ceiling isn’t totally flat: there is a lot going on when you look up. We have that famous conveyor system in addition to piping, signs, and loads more. Those would all affect trying to bounce the flash off of the ceiling: and not in a good way necessarily. I needed more reliability, so the flashbender seemed like a better choice.
Then I needed to figure out if I would take the 5D Mk II or the Canon T3i with me. I opted for the 5D Mk II because it was pouring outside (I needed to walk to the adjacent block to get to the store) and because my wide angles would actually be wide instead of semi-wide due to the full frame sensor.
So I walked over to the store through the pouring rain without a jacket, umbrella or hat (my co-workers call me crazy for doing this) and got right to work.
There is something about walking into an event with completely confident body language, a big camera, big lens, big flash, and a flash modifier attached that makes people realize that you’re there to do business. With that said, I got right to work photographing the event and ensuring that I showed off the fact that it was packed in there.
I made very few modifications to the flashbender in use: most of the time I kept it flat/straight up and just changed the head’s position to reflect the light onto different areas.
I gained a new insight at the event when the instructor saw me: I could use my flashbender to project light onto the reflector that is to the left of the model in the photo above for even more diffused light. On the model’s other side, there is a giant Impact softbox giving off continuous light.
When I saw the result in the photo above, I was astounded how balanced I could make the image when at F/4, 1/15th of a second and when dialing the flash down to – 1 2/3 at ISO 400.
Knowing the Event Space coordinators, I had a feeling that the shoot was going on in more than one location. And I was indeed correct.
The crowd was so packed that there were so many times that I was pulling hail mary shots: raising the camera above my head to get a shot. With that, I also tilted the 580 EX II’s head accordingly so that the flashbender could illuminate my subjects evenly.
Once again it didn’t fail. This made me think a lot though: if I were to use this item at a party or wedding, lighting my subjects would be such a breeze. The Flashbender is so light and doesn’t force the flash head to move out of place: which is another added plus.
At the end of the day, I was extremely impressed with what the Flashbender could do, and so were my coworkers and boss.
More to come in future field reviews of the product! Leave us some love, hate, comments, or questions in the comment area please.
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